US Fed leaves rates unchanged

US Fed leaves rates unchanged

The Federal Reserve upgraded its assessment of the U.S. economy, but decided to skip another interest rate increase for now.

The central bank's policymaking Federal Open Market Committee voted unanimously to keep the target range for its benchmark rate at 1.75% to 2%.

However, the committee is widely expected to approve an increase at the September meeting and a tweak in the language from the post-meeting statement could be a nod toward more monetary policy normalization.

The statement said the labor market has "continued to strengthen," language consistent with the June meeting, CNBC reported.

However, the committee noted that "economic activity has been rising at a strong rate," a more bullish view than the June characterization of "solid" growth.

In addition, the statement noted that household spending and business fixed investment have "grown strongly." That, too, is an improvement from June's characterization that household spending has "picked up."

There were no other substantial changes in the statement. The committee noted that its policy stance remains "accommodative" and said inflation continues to progress near the Fed's 2% goal.